In need of a pick-me-up for its struggling COVID-19 vaccine rollout, Washington state has turned to a familiar resident: Starbucks.

The Seattle-based coffee company will provide “operational efficiency, scalable modeling and human-centered design expertise and support,” Washington Governor Jay Inslee announced this week.

Starbucks, which serves 100 million customers per week from 33,000 stores, is an example of how the supply-chain expertise of businesses can help rescue U.S. vaccination efforts, says Nada Sanders, distinguished professor of supply chain management at Northeastern.

“Starbucks is an excellent example of a business that understands operational efficiency, and can apply that expertise to the setting of vaccine distribution,” Sanders says.


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